How’s everyone doing? Self-quarantining? Social distancing? Catching up on podcasts/the New Yorker/housecleaning? Drinking quarantinis and coronaritas while awaiting the #Coronapocalypse?
One option for a quarantini, via Marilyn Starkloff. Coronarita recipes using Corona brand beer have been around for several years; the 2020 pandemic version is here. This Podcast Will Kill You tweeted about quarantini and placeborita cocktails even earlier, on February 4.
Me? I’m fine; thanks for asking. I’m happy to live in California, where we have a mensch for a governor. (Compare and contrast.) And I’m cheered by the inventive linguistic responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, examples of which I bring you today.
(Thanks to Ben Zimmer for coining #coronacoinages. I’m winging it with some of the definitions; I welcome refinements and additions in the comments.)
Coronials. From @SciencesPoulet: “With the current quarantines, if in 9+ months there is a surge of the number of births, we’ll have to call that new generation the ‘Coronials.’” From “corona[virus]” + “millennials.”
Quaranteens. And what will they be called when they grow up?
Gen Plague. Or maybe this, the contribution of Berton Averre, who wrote “My Sharona” for The Knack back in 1978.
“My Corona.” Speaking of that song, it was inevitable that there would be topical parodies. Here’s a fun one.
Coronatunes. Actress/singer/songwriter Rita Wilson and her husband, actor Tom Hanks, tested positive for COVID-19 and are quarantined in Australia, where they had been traveling. To pass the time, Wilson created a playlist that one of her followers dubbed “Coronatunes.” According to Twitter, at least three people had come up with the same portmanteau four days earlier. And the song suggestions keep coming.
Visit Estonia says, swearily: don’t.
COVIDeo Party. After you’ve run through all your Coronatunes, you could throw yourself (and only yourself) a Covideo Party. Start with Contagion (2011) and proceed from there. The appropriate hashtag is #RonaAndChill – Rona being how the cool kids truncate “Corona.”
#CovideoParty is incredibly fun and hilarious to read on twitter, but it's also a really cool example of how social media can bring people together during bleak times.— Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Stan Account (@TrashDaddio) March 15, 2020
Nice to be connected, if even just for a little while.
Iso bro. Hat tip to self-isolating Jay Caspian Kang for this one.
As an ‘iso bro’ I look forward to viciously slandering my normie opponents and being written about in several major publications. Starting a podcast and patreon.— kang (@jaycaspiankang) March 14, 2020
Flu bro. Don’t be that guy who insists “it’s just the flu lol why is the media panicking.” Related: Curlbro.
Herd bro. Don’t be this guy either. Herd immunity occurs when a high enough percentage of a population is immune to a disease either through vaccination or prior exposure—neither of which has happened with COVID-19 because it’s a novel coronavirus, not the kind that causes the common cold. Last week the UK government’s chief science advisor unscientifically recommended exposing lots of people to COVID to “build up some kind of herd immunity”; by the weekend, the secretary of state was saying oops, bad idea, never mind.
Flubros are so three days ago. Things are moving fast. Now we have to deal with the herd immunity herdbros who want to expose us all and let the virus decide Thanos-style.— Jet (*´ω｀*) (@jetcupcake) March 15, 2020
Coronadouche. And by all means don’t be that guy.
Hamsterkaufen. And please don’t do this, either. As Mike Pope explains in his Friday Words post, hamsterkaufen is German for “hamster buying”: hoarding purchases as a hamster stuffs its cheeks with food. The English equivalent is “panic buying”—as we’ve seen with yon Coronadouche and all those toilet-paper stocker-uppers—but I agree with Mike that hamsterkaufen is much more evocative and needs to be adopted into English as we’ve done with kindergarten and schadenfreude.
Speaking of furry animals, you’ve probably heard by know that all these precautions are intended to flatten the curve: to slow down the progress of the pandemic so that hospitals and healthcare workers aren’t overwhelmed. If that sounds too dry, here’s a cuter way to think of it: cattening the curve.
Updated to add:
Covidiot: A person who, in a time of crisis, hoards food and essential supplies and denies them to those in need. Blend of COVID and idiot. Earliest definition in Urban Dictionary: March 14, 2020.
Covidiot in action:
So this woman not only buys out a local Dollar Tree of every single box of paper towels, napkins, and toilet paper so that no one else can buy any, but caps it off with this:— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) March 21, 2020
"Donald Trump! Go Donald Trump!" pic.twitter.com/45u2yIjVdQ